Last month we blogged about how a Scottish gamekeeper, William (Billy) Dick, was appealing against his conviction for killing a buzzard (see here).
A quick recap:
In August 2015, gamekeeper William (Billy) Dick, now 26, was found guilty of killing a buzzard on the Newlands Estate, Dumfriesshire, in April 2014. Two witnesses had observed him striking the buzzard with rocks and then repeatedly stamping on it (see here). In September 2015 he was sentenced: £1,500 fine for killing the buzzard and £500 for possession of the dead buzzard (see here).
Dick had maintained his innocence throughout the trial and had claimed he was elsewhere when the offence took place (see here).
His appeal was due to be heard in April but was then delayed. His appeal was heard at the High Court on 13th May 2016:
The three presiding judges have reserved judgement. This means they’ll consider the appeal and produce a written judgement in due course.
How long before we can expect to hear their decision? We have no idea. Apparently there’s no time limit and much will depend on the quantity and complexity of the evidence heard, and how busy the three judges are! See here for an enlightening blog about waiting for a reserved judgement.
The decision will impact on the current prosecution against Newlands Estate landowner Andrew Duncan, charged with being vicariously liable for gamekeeper Dick’s crimes. The case against Andrew Duncan has encountered frequent delays while Dick’s appeal was underway. The next court hearing in the vicarious liability case is scheduled for 3rd June 2016 (see here). We can expect further delays if the judgement on Dick’s appeal has not been delivered by then.